By Scott Thomas
KFVS12 Vice President and General Manager
This year's NCAA Basketball Tournament was a huge success, with strong attendance and record viewership culminating in North Carolina winning the National Championship. When all is said and done, the real winner isn't just North Carolina. It's the schools and coaches who are getting huge financial payouts for their team's performance.
Collegiate athletics has turned into a multi-billion dollar business. But at what point should student athletes benefit financially from their own performance? We say when they're bringing in the big bucks for the program they represent.
Before you disagree with us, listen to these numbers. Every tournament game a school participated in earned their conference more than 1.7 million dollars from the NCAA. North Carolina, Gonzaga, Oregon, and South Carolina earned their respective conferences more than 8.5 million dollars alone for advancing to the final four. The ACC earned over 30 million dollars.
And if you think those numbers are eye popping, according to USA Today Sports, North Carolina's Roy Williams earned an additional $925,000 for winning the National Championship, while his players took home only a t-shirt and hat. That seems a little out of whack don't you think? We're certainly not saying the players should earn this kind of money in college. Receiving a scholarship for a free education is nothing to scoff at. But we do feel they should get a portion of the pot for their postseason success, because if the players don't put in the work and make it to the tournament, those big checks never get written.
I'm Scott Thomas and that's our ViewPoint.